Learn Japanese with JapanesePod101.com

View topic - Short term exchange - Tokyo

Short term exchange - Tokyo

Post questions and answers about living or visiting Japan or the culture

Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby CometBelle » Sun 06.24.2007 3:06 pm

I'm 14 years old, and I've been interested in Japan since I was probably..10 or 11. Six months ago I decided to try to learn the language. I'm still a beginner at the language..I know a few things about it, and I'm working very hard at studying.

I recently found a program that would allow me to stay in Tokyo with a local family for 2 to 12 weeks. I would attend classes to learn more about the language and culture, but wouldn't be taking regular high school classes. I told my parents about the program, and had to beg them just to consider it. They know that this is something I really want to do, and I'm sure they know that I could do it. My mom is hitting me with a lot of rude comments about Japan, as if to make me change my mind about going. She's saying people in foreign countries HATE Americans, which I know is not the truth. She's also saying she would like me to be fluent in the language before going, even though I'd be going to improve my language and social skills.

Also, I'd really like to go either late this year, or early next year, and my parents say it takes months to get a passport. How long does it take to get a passport? And the program would cost thousands of dollars, apparently something my family doesn't have, though I know we could afford it; since I'm still trying to convince my parents to let me go, I'm thinking that paying for some of it myself would really help convince them. Where am I, a 14 year old, going to get thousands of dollars when no place around here would hire someone my age?

Another thing, if anyone has any ideas on how to convince my parents to let me go..all suggestions are helpful! Thanks.
CometBelle
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun 06.24.2007 2:48 pm

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby Mike Cash » Sun 06.24.2007 6:47 pm

It is refreshing to see an American youth who has good spelling and English composition skills. It brings a tear to my eye.

Your parents are correct that the US government is currently running behind on issuing passports. I believe "months" is correct.

Trust me; you have no perspective on what your family can and can not afford. And I feel your pain regarding your youth hampering your employability. There are things such as mowing yards and baby sitting by which an enterprising young person can sock away a few bucks. If you get into gear and show determination and initiative through actual hard work, and self-sacrifice by foregoing the temptation of immediate gratification, instead saving your money to finance your trip, I believe your parents would be much more likely to be willing to make some sacrifices to help you realize your goal.

In addition to the passport, it can take a while to set up all the particulars for a visa and for your homestay. The time frame you're looking at is more likely to be sometime next year.

If your mother would like to share with us some of her concerns or inadequately informed misconceptions regarding Japan, one of the safest places in the world for an American, I'm sure we would be glad to help dispell them.
Never underestimate my capacity for pettiness.
User avatar
Mike Cash
 
Posts: 2737
Joined: Sun 08.20.2006 3:38 am
Native language: English

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby AJBryant » Mon 06.25.2007 3:26 am

What Michael said.

Hey, all you folks, take a page out of CometBelle's stylebook.

You have lots of time to work on it, so just put it aside for now and make foreward momentum in learning Japanese and studies in general. You have a good combination of time and ambition.


Tony
User avatar
AJBryant
Site Admin
 
Posts: 5313
Joined: Sun 10.09.2005 11:29 am
Location: Indiana
Native language: English
Gender: Male

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby two_heads_talking » Mon 06.25.2007 12:12 pm

CometBelle wrote:
I'm 14 years old, .


You are starting off right, but realize that your age is going to be a big factor in whether your parents let you out of their sight.



CometBelle wrote:Also, I'd really like to go either late this year, or early next year, and my parents say it takes months to get a passport. How long does it take to get a passport?.


Currently the US is almost 9months behind in issuing passports. In some states it might be a bit less and in some areas even longer.

CometBelle wrote:And the program would cost thousands of dollars, apparently something my family doesn't have, though I know we could afford it; since I'm still trying to convince my parents to let me go, I'm thinking that paying for some of it myself would really help convince them. Where am I, a 14 year old, going to get thousands of dollars when no place around here would hire someone my age?

Another thing, if anyone has any ideas on how to convince my parents to let me go..all suggestions are helpful! Thanks.


if your parents say they don't have the money, why force the issue? They may have future plans that include your college funds to worry about and other things that come up unexpectedly all the time to really focus on. Also, as you said how could you afford to do it yourself? Isuppose you could do yard work in your neighborhood. If you really want to do it, and want your parents to know you do, that's the only option. make money any way you can.

Lastly, respect the decision of your parents. it might not be what you want to hear, but if you don't respect their wishes now, you definately won't later on. Sometimes, parents do things for our own good that we don't really think are for our good. Then, when we are a bit older the light finally turns on and we say.. NARUHODO and life goes on..
Last edited by two_heads_talking on Mon 06.25.2007 12:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
two_heads_talking
 
Posts: 4137
Joined: Thu 04.06.2006 11:03 am
Native language: English

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby CometBelle » Mon 06.25.2007 10:47 pm

Thank you all for replying to my post.

I realize that I don't know very much about how much money is spent with all the bills, taxes, and necessities, but there are things my family doesn't necessarily need that we tend to buy constantly (video games, toys, candy, DVDs, etc.). I know this is a family matter, and therefore it should be discussed with the family, and I plan to do that. I'm unsure of how much it will help my cause, so will it do any good?

I am going to talk to my mom about trying to get a passport soon, so hopefully I can have it by the time I wish to go on the trip. It's a big hope, and if I can't go at the time I want to, I may be able to go later next year (although 2009 will be latest I'll be able to go during the school year, because I'm taking college classes my junior and senior year, and being gone from school for a month will really affect my grades in those classes. I'm not sure worried about regular high school classes; if I go on the trip, I plan to take homework and textbooks with me to study and keep up on my studies.)

I got a bit further in convincing my mom. Turns out she's the only one I have to convince; if my mom approves, my dad does also. I'm planning on doing work around the house and selling some of the things that I no longer wish to keep. That can only get me so far, though. I'm getting many babysitting jobs now that it's the summer; I'm saving all the money I make. Also, I'm trying very hard to show my mom that I've become very responsible these past years by volunteering at both a hospital and the library (where she happens to work).

I'm hoping that if my mom learns more about Japan, she'll have better opinions of it. I'm going to send her the link to some of the pages from this website and hopefully she'll become interested in the culture and language and have a better understanding of why I want to go and what the experience would teach me.
CometBelle
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun 06.24.2007 2:48 pm

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby ss » Mon 06.25.2007 11:34 pm

My friend sent me a beautiful e-card with this saying, glad to share with you:
When we wake up in the morning, we have two simple choices.
Go back to sleep and dream, or wake up and chase those dreams.


Life is tested with endurance. Be steady with your dreams and work hard on it. :)
I wish you all the best, sincerely.
User avatar
ss
 
Posts: 1656
Joined: Fri 11.18.2005 10:07 am
Native language: English speaking family

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby spin13 » Tue 06.26.2007 1:15 am

Have you looked into delivering newspapers? I remember making about $1 per week per customer as a child. In my suburban neighborhood each route was around 35 to 40 customers. It's not a lot, but it's consistent, does not conflict with school, and provides mild exercise. I was delivering newspapers as early as age 11.

I also suggest asking your parents if any of the brokerage firms they may be involved with offer funds tailored towards young adults. These are low tax, low balance, conservative growth mutuals that invest in, among others, companies that the youth market is familiar and can identify with. This will provide you with additional potential income and an introduction to the world of Wall Street.

-Eric
You're probably not as smart as you think.
Unskilled and Unaware
spin13
 
Posts: 481
Joined: Wed 04.06.2005 9:38 pm
Location: Tokyo
Native language: English
Gender: Male

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby Mike Cash » Tue 06.26.2007 7:00 am

I think you will find the actual dollar amount that you save will not be so important as the display of maturity and sincere dedication to a goal that it represents. The Lord helps those that help themselves, and parents tend to do likewise with their children.
Never underestimate my capacity for pettiness.
User avatar
Mike Cash
 
Posts: 2737
Joined: Sun 08.20.2006 3:38 am
Native language: English

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby sei » Tue 06.26.2007 9:33 am

Mike Cash wrote:
The Lord helps those that help themselves, and parents tend to do likewise with their children.


I just thought I really had to quote this. :)
Very good advice Mike.

Also, I'm quite surprised (even though I am sort of new to this forum) to see Mike acting so nice towards someone. (Nice in the sense that you usually use more...enigmatic sentences and a sort of speech that if not interpreted well could cause great "damage". So I meant no offense.)

I'm starting to think that what you said before, about her writting (I believe it was that) "bringing a tear" to your eye was true.

Anyways, I hope you can go to Japan like you wish to CometBelle. You should take the opportunity to show your parents that you indeed are a responsible person, since you have access to ways of showing it. I'm always jealous when people so young can get a job, even if it's something like yard work or babysitting... I wish I had those sort of oppurtunities. Even with 17 as I am now (about to be 18 in 2 days...) it's extremely hard to get some sort of work. I only found something now (after months of searching), and it's more like a program for kids to occupy their free time in the summer. Only they pay a little bit (and when I say a little, I mean a little).

So take the opportunity and enjoy it. That's the most important part afterall.
Last edited by sei on Tue 06.26.2007 9:37 am, edited 1 time in total.
Image
Questions? Feel free to ask. :)
User avatar
sei
 
Posts: 525
Joined: Fri 03.30.2007 3:34 pm
Location: Portugal
Native language: Portuguese
Gender: Female

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby CometBelle » Wed 06.27.2007 9:02 pm

Good news, everyone!

I finally convinced my mom to let me go, but I have to pay for some of it, considering the whole trip will cost over $5,000. I have to pay at least $1,500, not including payment for my passport (though, I already almost have that much money).

I feel a bit bad about it all, though. Sadly, my mom only agreed because I was upset, and I was upset because she told me I'd have to wait until after school (which includes high school, college, and any other school I'm going to after that), I guess she felt horrible about it all, so she gave in. I do plan to pay her back though, and bring her back some lovely gifts.

All I need to do now is 1. get a passport, and 2. raise over a thousand dollars. I'm hoping to raise more than $1,500, and if not, I'm going to save money until I can pay my parents back in full. I'm looking out for any jobs in town at the moment, hopefully I can find one.

:)
CometBelle
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun 06.24.2007 2:48 pm

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby Infidel » Wed 06.27.2007 11:24 pm

sounds like a plan. If you're diligent with your Japanese studies and your work, you should do very well.
なるほど。
さっぱりわからん。
User avatar
Infidel
 
Posts: 3093
Joined: Sun 10.09.2005 1:12 am
Native language: 英語

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby Mike Cash » Thu 06.28.2007 9:01 am

sei wrote:
Mike Cash wrote:
The Lord helps those that help themselves, and parents tend to do likewise with their children.


I just thought I really had to quote this. :)
Very good advice Mike.

Also, I'm quite surprised (even though I am sort of new to this forum) to see Mike acting so nice towards someone. (Nice in the sense that you usually use more...enigmatic sentences and a sort of speech that if not interpreted well could cause great "damage". So I meant no offense.)


I am not offended in the least. I don't recognize your user name, though I see that you have made quite a number of posts. I take it you must hang out in the subfora which I never visit. I don't go to the areas I consider "kiddy land" and often when people come out of kiddy land and into the more serious side of the site they are suprised that the overall tone can be quite different, with me often being the most outstanding example.

Contrary to what some would have you believe (let's be clear....I mean saraLynne), I am not a heartless ogre getting my jollies by cruelly crushing beginners. I am quite often kind and helpful....though many people, especially those of the younger generation, fail to recognize it. People who judge kindness and help as being what they want to hear instead of what they need to hear generally fail to recognize it. In fact, my harshest critic not only never provides any examples of my offensive posts to buttress her claims of cruelty, she also steadfastly and studiously ignores requests to do so. I find such behavior beneath contempt.

And I tend to be precise and concise in what I say, preferring to say what I have to say in one or two sentences where possible. Some mistake that as a lack of thought or consideration when composing a response. The contrary is true. Samuel Johnson has been credited with writing, "I did not have time to write you a short letter, so I wrote you a long one instead. "

And, as you seem to have noticed, one would be mistaken to read into my posts that which is not there. I get in trouble most often for things I didn't say, and which non-critical readers have incorrectly assumed I said.

And, as I pointed out once quite a while ago, if you pay attention and carefully read my posts, you will find that despite my reputation for inciteful comments you will find a far greater number of insightful comments. Certainly far more informed, useful, accurate, helpful posts than I have ever seen from Miss Priss.
Last edited by Mike Cash on Thu 06.28.2007 9:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
Never underestimate my capacity for pettiness.
User avatar
Mike Cash
 
Posts: 2737
Joined: Sun 08.20.2006 3:38 am
Native language: English

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby two_heads_talking » Thu 06.28.2007 1:05 pm

From my perspective, Mike's posts are also based on maturity displayed. If you come across as a arrogant punk, you will most likely be treated like one. If, however, you come across as this young person did, mature and precise, you will find his posts much more accomodating..

You will find that with most of us as well.. I like a special quote. one that I cannot give credit to the originator as I do not know himor her.. but it goes like this..

You get back from your nature 3 times the results of what you give.. if you give generously, you receive even more generously. If you give selfishly, you receive nothing ....
User avatar
two_heads_talking
 
Posts: 4137
Joined: Thu 04.06.2006 11:03 am
Native language: English

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby sei » Thu 06.28.2007 2:02 pm

Mike Cash wrote:
I am not offended in the least. I don't recognize your user name, though I see that you have made quite a number of posts. I take it you must hang out in the subfora which I never visit. I don't go to the areas I consider "kiddy land" and often when people come out of kiddy land and into the more serious side of the site they are suprised that the overall tone can be quite different, with me often being the most outstanding example.


Well, first of all. I feel honored by your response. As silly as that may sound.

And secondly, kiddy land? Interesting description, but I hardly think I go into such areas. I usually post in threads that interest me, that's all. It has mainly been the JLPT forum right now. Kiddy land? Maybe...
Though I usually read about every new thread made, even if just to give it a quick glance. Or at least those that the tittle actually says something. So, no, I don't think I am surprised by anything around here. And I tend to really enjoy your posts.

Contrary to what some would have you believe (let's be clear....I mean saraLynne), I am not a heartless ogre getting my jollies by cruelly crushing beginners. I am quite often kind and helpful....though many people, especially those of the younger generation, fail to recognize it. People who judge kindness and help as being what they want to hear instead of what they need to hear generally fail to recognize it. In fact, my harshest critic not only never provides any examples of my offensive posts to buttress her claims of cruelty, she also steadfastly and studiously ignores requests to do so. I find such behavior beneath contempt.

And I tend to be precise and concise in what I say, preferring to say what I have to say in one or two sentences where possible. Some mistake that as a lack of thought or consideration when composing a response. The contrary is true. Samuel Johnson has been credited with writing, "I did not have time to write you a short letter, so I wrote you a long one instead. "

And, as you seem to have noticed, one would be mistaken to read into my posts that which is not there. I get in trouble most often for things I didn't say, and which non-critical readers have incorrectly assumed I said.

And, as I pointed out once quite a while ago, if you pay attention and carefully read my posts, you will find that despite my reputation for inciteful comments you will find a far greater number of insightful comments. Certainly far more informed, useful, accurate, helpful posts than I have ever seen from Miss Priss.


Well, I skipped this thread and went ahead to some that were on the "Newest Threads" box, so I already gave my opinion about your posts in another thread a few minutes ago. Sorry about that.

I'll just link to it if you ever get bored: :)

Click to read post.
I'm not sure how to make it go directly to the post, so I apologize if you have to scroll down a little bit.
Image
Questions? Feel free to ask. :)
User avatar
sei
 
Posts: 525
Joined: Fri 03.30.2007 3:34 pm
Location: Portugal
Native language: Portuguese
Gender: Female

RE: Short term exchange - Tokyo

Postby Mike Cash » Thu 06.28.2007 4:35 pm

Thanks you, sei.

Just to clarify: I don't visit any areas of the site which deal with J-Rock/Pop or anime/manga.

I saw your other post in the locked thread and I appreciate it all the more knowing that it came before you even read my previous post in this thread.
Never underestimate my capacity for pettiness.
User avatar
Mike Cash
 
Posts: 2737
Joined: Sun 08.20.2006 3:38 am
Native language: English

Next

Return to Culture and Info about living in Japan

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests